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“Gorgeous beach, gorgeous hosts”

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Il Pirata Bungalows at Pirate Kites
New York
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Gorgeous beach, gorgeous hosts”
Reviewed June 9, 2012

My friend and I spent three perfect days here on our recent trip to Mozambique. We reached the beach by flying to Pemba, and it's only about a 30-minute drive from town. Once we arrived, we immediately questioned why we hadn't come sooner. Il Pirata Bungalows are situated on a gorgeous stretch of unpopulated beach, so that alone makes you feel like you've gone to heaven. On top of that Susana and Carlo were such wonderful hosts who treat their guests like family but are not intrusive at all. Susana wanted to make sure that we were comfortable throughout our visit and it was impossible not to be. The staff are also really great and helpful and the meals were all perfect. I couldn't have imagined a better place to stay but only wish that we did not have more time to spend there.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank mikehotelkilo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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33 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Setubal, Portugal
Level Contributor
37 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2012

We stayed almost one week with Susana and Carlo at Il Pirata, it was for sure one of the best holidays of my life!
Il Pirata is around 15Kms from Pemba the main city in the region, you need a 4x4 car to get there since the last kms of "road" are not "designed" for normal city cars.
When we got there both Susana and Carlo and the remaining staff welcome us and it was just great to get a cold drink on the "chillout lounge". After the first hour you get the feeling you are in a very special place, only 3 bungalows (we were alone there during our stay), your own (private) beach...and it gets better....Susana's food is just fantastic, a mix of italian and local food. The bungalows have the very basic, during the night you can hear all possible insects, the waves and nothing else, the sky is the most beautiful I saw ever, you can see stars which typically you can only see it in the midle of the ocean.
You need to come with open mind for insects and animals since you will see it all :)
We hope we can go back there one day for another 100% non-stress holidays.
Thanks Susana for taking care of us!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank west_coast_of_europe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blantyre, Malawi
Level Contributor
81 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2011

We had a very bad start to our stay as we hadn't been sent directions for getting to the lodge and there are absolutely no sign posts. We couldn't get cell phone coverage to call and in the end stopped at 3 police stations to try and find the lodge. A policeman at the last station accompanied us and we finally got there after about 1.5 hours of driving around the area! Therefore if you drive there make sure you get directions beforehand!

We stayed in the more expensive stone house. It has 2 stories with the bedroom on the 2nd level. Very nice but only limited sea views due to vegetation and because it is set back from the sea. The shower only has cold water but it wasn't really a problem even in the cooler month of August. There are only 2 more chalets at Il Pirata and as they aren't close there is plenty of peace and privacy. In the early morning only birds tend to congregate by 1 open area of the chalet which is nice until they fly in and start pooping in the chalet. Therefore don't leave all your clothes lying around overnight if you stay!

The restaurant and bar are under the owners living quarters. It isn't far from the beach but again limited views of the sea due to vegetation. The food is cooked by Susanna and was very nice and also plentiful. As she is Italian the food was Italian! We were given the option of eating with the owners and other guests in the evenings or on our own table and we opted for the former. We enjoyed doing that as it was much more sociable than all the other lodges during our 1 month trip. Both Carlo and Susanna were very hospitable and we enjoyed talking to them in the evenings.

The beach is very nice and good for walking. One of their staff would always automatically unobtrusively follow from a distance just in case. A nice precaution although I really think there is very little risk. As the beach is very tidal you cannot swim at low tide and the tide goes out about 1 km. We were there during the windy season and as we found all the way upto Northern Tanzania it can be a bit too much unless you want to kite surf!

If you are going to stay in the Pemba area I highly recommend Il Pirata as the beach and area around Il Pirata is unspoilt whereas Pemba itself is very developed and doesn't have such a great reputation. Thanks Susanna and Carlo for the very nice stay.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank MalawiExpat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2011

We stayed for four nights at Il Pirata in October 2011 and had the most amazing time. The bunglalows and restaurant/bar area are situated just by a beach about 10km down the coast from Pemba. The beach is perfect - pure white sand and clear sea stretching out as far as you can see - and far nicer than the beaches at Pemba. As Il Pirata only has three rooms, the chances are you will have the beach to yourself, as there is no other accommodation nearby, as far as we could tell, and no large villages.

The huts and buildings which make up the site have clearly been well-built with care and a lot of thought and it has a nice, personal feel to it - much nicer than some of the more souless formulaic "eco-tourism" accommodation you find in the region.

Susanna and Carlo are great hosts and go out of their way to accommodate you. We originally booked for five nights, but missed our first night as our train to Nampula was delayed - this was no problem at all for Susanna and Carlo. They are really nice to chat to and get to know, and are always around for advice on the area. You also get to eat Susanna's great Italian food! Their staff are also very helpful and friendly.

If you are considering travelling to the Pemba area and are thinking of making the journey to the Quirimbas, then I would strongly recommend Il Pirata as an alternative. The beach and accommodation are as good as you would get anywhere, but at a fraction of the price.

We are even considering travelling from the UK to go there again next year - highly recommended, thanks Carlo and Susanna!

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank T0mK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2011

It's the 4th time we come back.
The place is a real paradise in earth: beautiful sea, huge lagoon and bungalows on the beach.

The restaurant is a very nice italian cuisine where you can eat pizza or tortelloni or pasta with lobster.

The lagoon is perfect to swim, to kitesurf or going out with the canoo.

Susanna and Carlo with their beautiful girls are like a family.

  • Stayed January 2011
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Helpful?
Thank Giulia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Princeton
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed July 30, 2010

I didn't stay at Il Pirata - but I tried to!

When planning my trip with my husband and son to Pemba, I contacted Il Pirata via email to inquire about availability. Because I never received a reply, which I assumed was because I had used my work email, which tends to block spam, I asked my husband to send an email to Il Pirata. He received a reply saying they had no availability. As a result, we ended up staying elsewhere.

When in Pemba, I stopped at a travel agency to, once again, inquire about the possibility of staying in Il Pirata at least for a few days. The travel agent called Il Pirata who then said they could accommodate us for a few nights. However, when the owner of Il Pirata heard my name, she refused to receive us because she claimed that she had replied to my email and got no response from me! The travel agent explained the circumstances and asked her to put this story behind since it was clearly a confusion with emails and a case of miscommunication. But, to our surprise, she refused.

A few days later we received a call from the travel agent saying that the owner of Il Pirata had changed her mind. However, it was just too late for us.

I was clearly baffled by this whole experience... I've heard good things about the place, so it was quite a shock to experience this kind of customer service and negative attitude towards someone who really wanted to stay at this hotel...

Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank viveamelie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carcavelos
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed January 2, 2010

Perfect place to stay near Pemba. The beach is much better than the others near the village, and much more quiet. And you sleep just 30 seconds from it! They have a restaurant where you can eat really good italian food (Susana and Carlo, the owners, are italian).

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Kapandji
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Il Pirata Bungalows at Pirate Kites

Property: Il Pirata Bungalows at Pirate Kites
Address: Murrebue CP 343, Mozambique
Location: Mozambique > Cabo Delgado Province > Murrebue
Amenities:
Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Murrebue
Number of rooms: 3

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